The world just keeps getting better for Hayao Miyazaki fans. The director’s first project since he announced his retirement is a short film entitled “Boro the Caterpillar,” and it appears he is almost finished and ready to show the world what he’s been up to. According to Studio Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki, Miyazaki will finish production on “Boro” this Spring and plans to premiere the short at the Studio Ghibli museum in Mitaka, Tokyo by June or July 2017.
Miyazaki has a long history of making exclusive short films for the museum, including the 14-minute “My Neighbor Totoro” sequel “Mei and the Kittenbus” and “Mizugumo Monmon” (2006). The latter was based in part on the idea for “Boro,” which Miyazaki has been wanting to make since before “Princess Mononoke”in 1997. Suzuki revealed the hand-drawn “Boro” is expected to run around 12 minutes.
The premiere info is the latest in a long line of great Miyazaki news as of late. The director’s Oscar winner “Spirited Away” returned to theaters this week (earning $800,000 at the box office on its first of three nights), and distributor GKIDS confirmed its bringing “Princess Mononoke” back to the big screen at the beginning of January 2017.
Best of all is the director’s return to feature filmmaking. Following the premiere of “Boro,” Miyazaki will begin work on his first feature since “The Wind Rises.” Rumor has it that the film will be a feature-length version of “Boro,” though nothing has been confirmed at this early date. Ghibli has a tentative mid-2019 release date planned for the untitled project. targeting a yet-titled new feature film is scheduled to be released in the middle of 2019.